Here you’ll find the 10 best Christmas movies for kids and families. As a mom, I have plenty of experience watching Christmas movies and shows, and here I’ll list our favorite ones.
It was hard to choose just 10, but I managed to do it. In order to pair this list down to 10 I had to leave some very good movies out, but I think these represent what my family enjoys. Our boys are 7 years apart, so finding something we all love can be a challenge….and these movies are perfect for us all!
Table Of Contents, For Your Convenience
- 1 1. The Polar Express The Polar Express (Widescreen Edition)
- 2 2. How The Grinch Stole Christmas Show
- 3 3. How The Grinch Stole Christmas Movie With Jim Carey Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas (Widescreen Edition)
- 4 4. Elf Elf (Infinifilm Edition)
- 5 5. Home Alone Home Alone
- 6 6. A Christmas Story A Christmas Story (Full-Screen Edition)
- 7 7.National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (Special Edition)
- 8 8. A Charlie Brown Christmas A Charlie Brown Christmas (Remastered Deluxe Edition)
- 9 9. Scrooged Scrooged
- 10 10. Deck The Halls Deck the Halls
1. The Polar ExpressThe Polar Express (Widescreen Edition)
The Polar Express is my choice of the best christmas movies for kids and families because of how much joy my family has had while watching this movie. We watch it every year, and both of my boys have always loved the movie. They’re 6 and 13 right now and it’s one of the few things they have left in common. While we watch this movie we drink hot chocolate and I my best to serve them theirs while the hot chocolate scene is going on in the movie. It just adds that special touch for them and I love hot chocolate myself, so it’s a treat for us all. We all snuggle up on the couch in our pajamas and spend some great family time. My granny used to say “we’re making memories” when we were cooking with her or doing other things, and that’s exactly what happens when you watch this movies…..you make memories with your children.
2. How The Grinch Stole Christmas Show
Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas (Deluxe Edition) How The Grinch Stole Christmas, the original show version, is my personal favorite of all time. I placed The Polar Express above this one because my kids enjoy it slightly better than this one. Until we watch The Polar Express for the first time, this was our favorite family Christmas movie. I started watching this show as a kid and nothing says Christmas quite like Grinch does. What is so endearing about How The Grinch Stole Christmas, is that it shows that Christmas isn’t about how much stuff we have, but what we have in our hearts. I also adore the innocence reflected with the character Cindy Lou Who, especially when she asks “Santy Clause” why he’s taking her tree. The Dr. Seuss rhyming makes this show extra fun to watch, and the animation seems to remind me of coloring books. Simple lines, beautiful colors, and details in just the right places. Introducing your child to “your Grinch” and them sharing with them the “new Grinch” is a fun thing to do and was a hit with my children.
3. How The Grinch Stole Christmas Movie With Jim Carey Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas (Widescreen Edition)
This version of Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas features Jim Carrey as The Grinch, the one who hates Christmas and despises all of the residents of Whoville….The Whos. What this movie does differently than the original animated story is that it goes back in time. This movie shows viewers exactly who the Grinch was as a baby and then a child, and how he turned into the mean Mr. Grinch, who hates everything about Christmas. By doing this, the Grinch becomes more likable because children know what it feels like to have someone be mean to you and they can relate to the Grinch when he’s made fun of about his homemade Christmas gift. The best part of the movies is when the Grinch tries to scare Cindy Lou Who and he gets exhausted. It’s hilarious when the Grinch looks at the camera and comments about kids today and the violence in television and movies….and that’s just one example of cute one liners thrown in for adults to enjoy. My kids love when The Grinch messes up the town Christmas celebration…they laugh until their sides hurt, and to be honest, I do too! Like the original, the movie shows children what Christmas is all about – it’s not about gifts and decorations, or how much you have. It’s about enjoying our family and friends, and that relationships are what matter, not things.
4. Elf Elf (Infinifilm Edition)
“I just like to smile, smiling’s my favorite” is my favorite quote from “Elf”, a movie about Buddy The Elf who’s a human who’s been raised by elves in the north pole. Buddy believes he’s an elf. When Buddy finds out the truth he decides to find his real family. Once Buddy gets to New York he finds his father, a workaholic scrooge. The movie is very clever and fun for the whole family. My kids just love Buddy! When they found out about the elf food groups I thought they may both decide to let elves adopt them since elves main food groups are candy, candy canes, candy corn and syrup. Who wouldn’t want to be an elf? As a hopeless romantic my favorite aspect of the film is the love story between buddy and a sweet co worker who befriends him. He brings out the child in her and she helps him to navigate his changing world in a loving way.
5. Home Alone Home Alone
Home Alone is a movie that always makes me think of my childhood. It was one of those movies that we watched over and over again as kids, and now my kids love it. What kid hasn’t ever wished his family would go away and leave him in peace at one time or another? It’s that simple idea that makes this movie stand the test of time. Kids can relate to Kevin and parents can relate to his parents, but also can be relieved we’ve never left a kid home alone….yet. It’s the Christmas and the entire family is headed off to Paris for vacation. Chaos ensues before they even leave the home as Kevin, an 8 year old played by Macaulay Culkin, has numerous interactions with different family members that leave him frustrated and angry. Kevin ends up getting sent to bed early and finds himself wishing his family would disappear. The family awakens in the morning to find they’re running late for their flight and with all the chaos, Kevin is left. His mom realizes she left him while in the plane. Kevin starts off being thrilled about being alone, but after dealing with burglers and befriending a neighbor, he begins to miss his family. This is a beautiful movie that will have your home filled with laughter and joy just in time for the Holidays.
6. A Christmas Story A Christmas Story (Full-Screen Edition)
A Christmas Story is movie is based on an autobiographical look back on Jean Shepherd’s hilarious memories of childhood. The star of the movie is Ralphie and he wants a Red Ryder BB gun for Christmas so badly that he plots and thinks about how he can get that gun. He goes to different adults with this Christmas gift wish, but no matter which adult in his life he tells, it gets told it’s a bad idea. The adults all say the same thing, that he’d shoot his eye out. Even Santa tells him “You’ll shoot your eye out kid” before pushing him down a slide. That phrase echos throughout my home around Christmas time as my husband relieves his memories of this movie. Ralphie is a bit mischievous – like when he’s in the group that gets his friend to stick his tongue to a frozen pole at recess. No one is admitting they had a role in it, and we hear it from his point of view, which is hilarious. All little boys, heck, even little girls, can relate to this. I think that’s what makes this movie so special. Ralphie can’t seem to take his eyes off of his father’s prized possession – a lamp in the shape of a woman’s stocking-covered leg that lights up the neighborhood, he fights a bully, and gets his mouth washed out with soap. He also happens to drop the f bomb where his dad can hear…..let’s just say Ralphie has a run of bad luck and the audience gets treated to it all from Ralphie’s point of view. Will Ralphie ever get the Red Ryder BB Gun that he’s been dreaming about?
7.National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (Special Edition)
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation is a movie everyone should see at least once, but once you see it you won’t stop with just one time. From the very beginning, this movie will have you cracking up with it’s funny one liners, slapstick comedy, and the relatives no one wants to have around….there’s always that one… The chaos begins when the Griswolds decide to stay at home rather than risk another messed up family vacation, but like magnets they attract the chaos right to their front door. The sledding saucer scene is our favorite and you’ll die laughing as you watch Clark have the ride of his life, and we just lost it at Uncle Eddie emptying the camper waste into the sewer in front of the house….the kids will scream “eeeeewwweeee” once they realize what’s going on. This movie lets us all know that although our relatives may sometimes get on our nerves, they love us and would do anything for us. Drum roll please……you’ll get it once you see the movie. 🙂
8. A Charlie Brown Christmas A Charlie Brown Christmas (Remastered Deluxe Edition)
In A Charlie Brown Christmas, Charlie Brown feels that the holidays have been completely taken over by commercialism and he wants that to change. As he tries to change the focus of Christmas, he’s met with many obstacles and constant reminders that Christmas has become the focal point spending and getting rather than giving and appreciating what you have. The most memorable part of this movie for me is when Charlie chooses his Christmas tree, a tree he believes represents Christmas, but the other kids laugh at his scrawny tree. Another touching moment in the movie is when Linus quotes the Christmas story. This is a cute feel-good movie that kids will love!
9. Scrooged Scrooged
Scrooged is one of the funniest movies I watched as a kid and is a retelling of the classic A Christmas Carol. The movie has a great cast of players and funnyman Bill Murray plays Frank Cross who is like Ebenezer Scrooge. He’s visited by each ghost, my favorite of which is the center of my favorite scene of the movie. She punches Frank and makes you love her instantly! At the end he learns his lesson, rights his wrong, and melts the hearts of all viewers. If your kids can get passed the age of the movie, they will surely enjoy it…especially when Frank gets punched.
10. Deck The Halls Deck the Halls
Deck the Halls is a funny story of two neighbors who go to drastic measures to show up the other one with their Christmas decorations. One neighbor feels like his turf is being invaded because Christmas is his thing. The other neighbor just wants his home to be seen from space on Google Earth and buys every light he can and puts it on his house. He also puts on a light show complete with music and what seems like the whole town, but by this time is neighbor has gone from Mr. Christmas to Mr. Scrooge. Like all Christmas movies, in the end everyone understands the true meaning of Christmas and all is good with the world again. This movie has terrible reviews by the general public, but I’m listing it here because I laughed hysterically and my children enjoyed this movie. It’s not for everyone, but if you like corny family comedies, I think you’ll enjoy this one.